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Do you ever just want to go and be, rather than planning all the sites to see?

Do you ever just want to go and be, rather than planning all the sites to see?

Dec 12th, 2007, 02:54 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,229

A non-planner is chiming in here. We book flights, car rentals and, depending on the type of trip, hotels. Sometimes we just leave a week or so open if we have a car and know about a certain area we want to see. That way we can stay in places we wnjoy rather than being forced to move on. And, conversely, if some place doesn't call to us, we leave.

I'm always amazed at those who have all the restaurant reservations all booked. I guess food is just not that important to me. How do you know what thime that night you'll feel like eating? How do you know whiah area of town you'll be in for lunch? I guess if all of your sightseeing is completely itinerized you'll know all this ahead of time.

Now, though I have a question that I know will get answered here before I have time to do the research. 2 days ago we bought tickets to Rome for the end of this month. I know this will probably astound some of you super planners. We have yet to figure out an itinerary or if we will even stay in Rome for a day or a week. As a longtime participant on this board, I keep reading about Scavi tours. What exactly are they? I assume whatever they are, I wouldn't be able to do one. Right?
julies is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 03:50 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 531

Have you done the Scavi tour before? I was so thrilled to receive our e-mail with our reserved time.

Even for our first time in Rome, we didn't plan a great amount. Aside from the Scavi tour, we had a list of things we wanted to see, but we always ensure we have time to wander.

I love to plan, and spend months planning. But, most of my time is spent getting to know what's available, not setting every moment into stone!

Have fun and have a great trip!
phieaglefan is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 04:52 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,793
How wonderful that you'll be able to enjoy the scavi tour!
A word of warning-- don't wear too many layers. It was quite warm and humid down there for these Minnesotans! We had to carry our coats and there wasn't much room to maneuver.
Tim_and_Liz is offline  
Mar 8th, 2008, 02:54 PM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 145
I tend to read/study/analyse as much as I can about any new travelling experience months ahead of the trip. Maps, history, temperature, geography, population, etc...

I try to picture the routes from one sight/place to another. The basic idea is to "know" the place before getting there.

Once in the place itself I really leave much to the day's convenience and a little bit to chance as to what will be seen or done at that particularly day.

I guess I could say I try to learn a lot before, but make very loose plans other than accomodations and transport.

By doing this I savor months before the trip, the trip proper, and months after the trip.

jfcarli is offline  
Mar 9th, 2008, 08:33 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,432
I am guilty of pretty much just showing up to a place, getting a feel for the "vibes", finding some decent chow, soaking in the culture, etc. I'll read a few pocketplanners while dining, and see which sites seem interesting. Then I'll see as much as I can, or want to, and call it a day.

I should probably add that I am a teacher, so I have the luxury of summers off. I'll spend 5 nights in Rome, a couple of weeks in Prague, etc. I try not to say "Monday will be the Vatican, Tuesday the Forum", etc. I wait to see what the weather will be, how I feel, how much energy I have, and how much $ I want to spend. Sometimes I'll find an amazing souvenir, and spend my money on that. The rest of the trip, I'll eat with the locals, or go to the market & buy food there.

I like to experience life like a local, rather than a tourist, most of the time. I love taking public transit, and seeing different areas of cities. Much more realistic view of the real life.
amp322 is offline  
Mar 9th, 2008, 08:48 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 569
I enjoy travel so much more since I finally decided to give myself permission to go and be. Go and be is amazing. Wake up early or late, rest when the urge strikes, eat or don't eat. Spend hours wandering and watching.

Pathetic NOT!!


ggnga is offline  
Mar 9th, 2008, 09:46 AM
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 169
Do I ever not want to plan? Nope. For me travel planning (and dreaming) is a hobby. I find it relaxing and enjoyable to examine all the details - much to my husbands dismay.

That is just me - you should plan as little or as much as you want and enjoy.

Have Fun!
MollyBrown is offline  
Mar 9th, 2008, 10:07 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 515
I share a lot of these tendencies. If it's a new place, I try to read up as much as I can before leaving so that I can make informed decisions about what I might like to see. I find the planning to be very fun - a great distraction from my life. If it's a place I've been before, I try to figure out if there is something I might like to see/do/eat that I haven't seen/done/eaten before.

But once I'm in a place, I tend to reject any schedule or planned itinerary, and just let the experience happen to me. I think I feel better "just being" if I've done my homework in advance. One of the least fun trips I've taken was to Portugal a few years ago. I didn't have time to do any advance research about the place and as a result, I felt like I didn't see all the best the country had to offer. (Though I have to say, I think a country like Italy or France doesn't really require too much research!)
txtree is offline  
Mar 9th, 2008, 11:22 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,037
I also like to do research ahead of our travels, however, I wouldn't say I plan. I form more of a mental outline no dates no timetable. I'll have a few food places in mind a few sights etc.... I enjoy the people watching, wandering, what ever.. thats the fun part. Have I missed things absolutely, it's just another reason to go back. I was in Florence 5 years ago and didn't see David, still kick myself.

I would rather miss things then over plan, because you may see more but you may lose the experience.
brando is offline  
Mar 9th, 2008, 03:29 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 4,129
Actually, all I plan are the cities I'm going to be in, so I can reserve hotels to stay in. I may get together a list of things I'd want to see while I'm in the surrounds of the city, but I don't hold myself to it. Like Brando, and I'm sure many others, I'd hate to find out upon my return that I was *so* close to something I really would love to have seen, but totally missed it because I didn't know it was there. It's completely different if I miss it on purpose though. Weird.

For instance, while in Paris, I said I wanted to visit the Louvre. Especially since it was right across the street from my hotel, the very reason I chose it. Passed it every day. Couldn't help but look at it every day. Never stepped foot into the Louvre, but that was partly by choice, as by the time we wanted to go, we realized it was Tuesday. Quelle dommage. So, we'll just go back to Paris. This coming from someone who's always wanted to visit the Louvre. Oops.

However, I just don't have it in me to plan a trip around restaurants. I eat at whatever looks interesting where ever I am. Perhaps this is why my dining experiences (specifically in Italy), have been so hit-or-miss.

But there's also a part of me that tells me to visit a city like I'm never going to see it again. You never know where life will take you.
mcnyc is offline  
Mar 10th, 2008, 01:08 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,384
i am the complete opposite! i resent having to eat!dont mind a coffee and a nice piece of local cake but a full scale meal each night..no !!
i am so often bitterly disappointed with meals ( including my own cooking!) so i resent paying for them even more
coffee is a big enough risk..have so many bad coffees ( albeit my taste only! others might really have enjoyed the brews ive had)
so i dont really relax into a meal especially in touristy parts of the world...especially dinner

i have been surprised from time to time and then i gush and rave but truly if i could just chew a hunger pill and keep moving then i would...waiting for slow service unless you have a good view and arent terribly hungry is agony

i much prefer getting some lovely fresh bread..some cheese...some nice fruit ( never really had GREAT fruit in my travels)and having a quick picnic ...lunch or evening...lived like that for days in croatia..not because we couldnt afford restaurants..just couldnt be bothered finding them and waiting to be fed
im sure im in the minority
planning other things like what villages to look out for is another matter...will spend months!
lanejohann is offline  
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